YORK’S economic news is worth celebrating. Along with impressively low unemployment (1.6 per cent), York’s moving up the league tables.

York is officially the most competitive city in Yorkshire – and second only to Manchester in the north. The Centre for Cities has us up from 18th in the UK under the Lib Dems to 17th place under this Labour administration. York Labour put jobs and growth at the heart of policies to help residents cope with the Conservative/Liberal Democrat “cost of living crisis”.

This council is paying a living wage to all employees and those with its trading company, and also looking to build fair wages into procurement.

Footfall in the city centre was the highest ever for December. Coordinated scrutiny research into improving the city-centre economy after 5pm is progressing well too.

If you have suggestions of how the council can work together to help our economy thrive and grow further and faster, please get in touch.

When we work together York bats far above its weight.

Coun Anna Semlyen, Chair of economic scrutiny, City of York Council, Labour, Dringhouses and Woodthorpe.


• I AM disappointed by a recent letter published from Conservative deputy leader Coun George Barton (Inflated cabinet, Letters, January 4).

In this letter he says it is an understatement to say that my cabinet colleagues and I are “pompous”.

I do wish our Conservative and Liberal Democrat opposition would not continue resorting to personal and childish name-calling. It turns so many people off politics, myself included.

Politics should be about the arguing of ideas and ideals to create a better society. Just because he may disagree with Labour policies, I do think he should show people across the political divide courtesy and respect just as I have always shown to him.

I refer Coun Barton to a quote from Charles R Anderson, “Observe which side resorts to the most vociferous name-calling and you are likely to have identified the side with the weaker argument and they know it.”

Coun James Alexander, Labour Leader of City of York Council.